department of tourism

government of west bengal

Jewish In Kolkata

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Kolkata, which was the capital of British India, many communities including the Jews arrived here. Shalon Aharon Obadiah Cohen arrived in Kolkata in 1798. He was born in Syria in 1762. He first arrived in Surat in 1792 and then in Kolkata.
In 19th Century Jews began to settle in large numbers in Kolkata. Next generation of Jews used European dress and English in their language for their communication.
There are five Synagogues in Kolkata. Permission is required from the Commonwealth offices to visit the Synagogues.
Jewish cemetery in Kolkata is at 45, Narkeldanga Main Road, Moses de Pus, first recorded death in Kolkata in 1812.

Maghen David Synagogue
Built in 1884 over the older Neveh Shalom, by Elias David Joseph Ezra. An inscription on the building describes Ezra as the Father of the Jewish community and indeed he built a grand place of worship, reputedly the ‘largest and most splendid in the in the Orient’. The brick-red, Italian Renaissance building is distinguished by its tall spire and gorgeous interiors. These include delicate stained-glass windows, plaques inscribed in Hebrew and a carved tebah (or altar).

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Maghen David Synagogue

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Synagogue St, Bara Bazar, Kolkata, West Bengal 700001.

Synagogue is located at the junction of Brabourne Road and Canning Street (Biplabi Rashbehari Road) in Kolkata. Magen David is the second operating synagogue in Kolkata; the other is the Beth El Synagogue at Pollock Street.

Beth El Synagogue
Across the road, on Pollock street,is beth el synagogue, built by Ezra’s father,the influential David Joseph Ezra, in 1856. Marble stairs lead into this pale yellow edifice with beautifully preserved interiors hung with chandeliers and bathed in light that filters in through large, stained-glass windows. A bust of the venerable Ezra is displayed in founder’s room adjacent to the main hall. Above the altar is a dome bearing three inscription, including verses from the Torah.

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Beth El Synagogue

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Chitpur, BBD Bagh, Kolkata, West Bengal 700001.

Neveh Shalome Synagogue
When Jewish started migrating to Calcutta (Now Kolkata), India for settlement in early eighteenth century, it was obvious that for daily worship they would required place for it, community would establish Synagogue here. First recorded Jew who settled down in Calcutta was Shalom Aharon Obadiah Cohen in the year of 1798. He migrated to Surat first from Aleppo (Present day Syria) and he came down in the year of 1792. He first settled down in Surat and after become successful in trade, than after he arrived in Calcutta in the year 1798.

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NEVEH SHALOME SYNAGOGUE

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9A, Indra Kumar Karnani St, China Bazar, Kolkata, West Bengal 700001.

During that period many Jews settled down in Calcutta, until Independence of India 1947 and formation of Jewish state of Israel in 1948. Between this long period of stay, Jewish community erected five number of Synagogues in Calcutta(Now Kolkata) and first Synagogue established in Calcutta was “Neveh Shalome” (Also known as Neve shaanan or Neve shalaon). Neveh Shalome built in 1831 by Shalom Cohen and it was there till 1884.

Magen Aboth Synagogue
This Synagogue was established in the year 1933 by A. Levroy. It was located near Old Chinabazar (Now Territibazar) of Calcutta (Now Kolkata) and was established for the convenience of those who unable to go to others Synagogues. Now there is no trace of this Synagogue, as it was demolished.
This Synagogue was not as old as other Synagogues if we compare with other Synagogues of Kolkata.
It has been replaced by an apartment and a marble tablet is there on the entrance of apartment mentions about the Synagogue was established in 1940. But as per a document of “Jewish Welfare Association” New Delhi, Center for Jewish & Inter-Faith Studies (Published on May 1984), it was established in 1933 by A. Levroy (25, Blackburn Lane, Calcutta).

Shaare Rasoon
This Synagogue was established in 1897 and was a simple prayer hall and located at the junction of Free School Street and Sudder Street in Calcutta (Now Kolkata). Now the hall is there but has no trace of the Synagogue. For entry in any Synagogue in Kolkata (Calcutta), special permission is required. Permission can be obtained from Jewish Girls School, Kolkata.

Department of Tourism
Government of West Bengal

New Secretariat Building
1, K. S. Roy Road, 3rd Floor,
Kolkata - 700001,
Phone : 033-2225 4723/4724/4725/4565
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